Hello, my fine chums!
Quirk #8 is here at last!!!
The stupendous Jem Jones created this smashing flash fiction series and I have joined in on it several times in the past because it is SUCH FUN. The results of my previous quirk adventures involved muddy boots, a questionable death, squabbling sisters, and noodle sculptures.
Essentially, Jem provides us with a prompt, and then we write whatever pops into our strange little heads based upon said prompt.
Behold, the prompt currently under consideration:
And behold, the results:
An Unreliable Funeral
“Are you Mrs. Alicia Kaddernabber?” said the man holding the alarmingly large bouquet of flowers.
“Yes,” said Mrs. Alicia Kaddernabber faintly. She stared at the man. Then she stared at the alarmingly large bouquet of flowers.
“I have nine more of these in my truck,” the man said, “plus two potted arrangements.”
Mrs. Kaddernabber opened her mouth. Then shut it again without speaking.
“Where would you like me to put them?”
“Pardon me?” Mrs. Kaddernabber stammered.
“Are you setting up in here or out back?”
“Setting up for…”
Mrs. Kaddernabber’s eyes bulged. “There must be some mistake,” she began.
“In the number of the arrangements, or—”
“No, no,” Mrs. Kaddernabber said hurriedly. “I didn’t order any flowers.”
The man squinted at her, looking slightly worried. “You are Mrs. Alicia Kaddernabber of Kaddernabber Farm?” the man said, producing a clipboard from somewhere (while still somehow balancing the alarmingly large bouquet of flowers).
“Because I got an urgent call this morning from a Mrs. Alicia Kaddernabber who told me to bring these arrangements to this address. For a funeral.” The man removed his hat (which was an impressive feat, considering that he was still holding the alarmingly large bouquet of flowers and the clipboard). His face took on a mournful expression. “I am deeply sorry for your loss.”
Mrs. Kaddernabber gaped at him.
Before she could summon words however, someone came marching into the room. It was her son, Anthony.
“Ah,” said Anthony in a resigned voice, taking in the scene. “My flowers have arrived.”
Mrs. Kaddernabber’s eyebrows shot up so violently that they almost flew off her face completely. “Your flowers—?”
“Indeed, I ordered them to spare you the inconvenience of doing so afterward,” Anthony explained solemnly. “Of course I had to pretend to be you—I am still very good at doing your voice, you know. It wold have been awkward if I had ordered flowers as myself for my own funeral.”
“Not to mention that I was using your credit card, so—”
“Sorry to interrupt,” said the man (who was still holding his hat, the clipboard, and the alarmingly large bouquet of flowers with apparent ease). “But where would you like me to put the flowers?” His face seemed to be struggling to maintain both a professional smile and a mournfully sympathetic expression while simultaneously channelling immense confusion—needless to say, it wasn’t doing a very good job.
Mrs. Kaddernabber turned back to him. “I’m sorry, but would you give us a moment?” she said sweetly.
“Certainly,” he said, and quickly closed the front door (which should not have been possible considering how many hands he had and how many things he was holding).
When Mrs. Kaddernabber looked back at Anthony he had made his way into the kitchen.
“Explain yourself,” she demanded.
“I am making myself some chai tea,” Anthony replied placidly. “Have you ever noticed how similar chai tea and tai chi sound?”
“You know that’s not what I mean,” Mrs. Kaddernabber snapped. “What is this about your funeral? You realize that generally funerals are held for people who have already died?”
“I am aware of that, yes,” Anthony said, looking at his mother with a very sombre expression. He took a deep breath. “Mother, I regret to inform you that I am going to be murdered.”
“Excuse me?” Mrs. Kaddernabber said.
“It will be quite soon, too,” Anthony went on as if she hadn’t spoken. “That’s why I ordered the flowers. I wanted to do what I could before it is too late.” He shook his head sadly. “I apologise in advance for the inconvenience my murder is going to have on your life.”
“Anthony,” his mother said, bewildered. “What on earth makes you think you are going to be murdered?”
“Well,” Anthony said. “The truth is, I brought this upon myself. I was a fool, to play so recklessly with my own mortality.” He paused. “We should probably do something about those flowers now.”
“We don’t need any flowers—”
“If only that was true!” Anthony said dramatically, staring into his tea with a pained expression.
“For the last time—”
“ANTHONY!” roared a voice from above.
“Ah,” Anthony said quietly. “My murderer.”
“That’s just your sister,” Mrs. Kaddernabber corrected.
“Like I said.”
They heard footsteps thundering on the stairs.
“Mother,” Anthony said. “Please remember me, as I was.”
Anthony’s sister Adelaide burst into the room, a notebook flapping wildly in her hand, her eyes blazing. Her blazing eyes fell on her mother first. “Mom!” she shrieked. “He destroyed my journal! He drew stupid little chipmunks all over it!”
Then her blazing eyes fell on Anthony. “I am going to kill you!”
Anthony looked calmly at his mother. “My murderer,” he confirmed.
There you have it.
As always, many thanks to Jem for providing the prompt! You should all check out her blog, not to mention all the other responses to the prompt (which I haven’t read yet but I’m sure they are amazing).
What have you been writing lately? Have you ever thought your sibling was going to kill you? Have you participated in the Quirks, and if not then WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR? Let me know all your writerly news in the comments!